Phones Tech reviews

OnePlus 2: Close to The Flagship Killer

Written by Maanasi

Of late, the Chinese are making great inroads into technology, more so in Smartphone arena! Lenovo has been on a swing, especially after buying Motorola’s mobile phone segment. Xiaomi is being hailed as the Apple of China. Meanwhile, another Chinese brand OnePlus is also making its presence felt. Unlike Lenovo and Xiaomi, it does not cater to various segments of buyers in the Smartphone market. OnePlus labels its devices as ‘flagship killer’! The OnePlus One sold over 1.5 million units and now comes the successor OnePlus Two, labeled as the ‘2016 Flagship Killer’. Does it have the power to take on the likes of Behemoths from the stables of Samsung, Sony and HTC? I tried the OnePlus 2 for a week, and the experience was largely nice.

Notification Switch-970-80

Image Credit: www.androidcentral.com

Two to Tango: Enhancements everywhere

While the OnePlus One offered premium Smartphone experience at nearly half the cost, with OnePlus 2 the company wants to up the ante further. I found it sporting enhancements in nearly every segment- build, camera, features and performance.

Classy, premium design

The phone sports a classy looking magnesium-aluminium alloy frame. At the back, you get coarse Sandstone black finish cover which is removable. If the sandstone black cover seems thin, you may opt for a wooden back. In fact, OnePlus offer more texture choices for rear panel like Kevlar and Rosewood. The device edges are stainless steel chamfered, adding to the premium look. The phone has a USB Type-C port for charging- a rarity in smart phones. Beneath the display there is the fingerprint scanner. At 175 grams, the device does feel heavier than many flagships it competes with.

Gorgeous display

The black front panel of OnePlus 2 is made of a 5.5-inch full-HD display with IPS LCD technology. There is Gorilla Glass 4 protection atop the display. The company claims with 600 nits brightness the device has the brightest display. I found it way brighter than the predecessor, OnePlus One. It offers nice sunlight legibility, wide viewing angles and excellent touch response. If you are grudging about the lack of a 2k display, remember including such a display would tax the battery. Overall, the device has a display that will suit all needs, including gaming and watching movies.

Impressive hardware spec

For its mid range price, OnePlus 2 offers mind blowing hardware specs matching most of the flagship rivals. Inside the device runs a powerful Snapdragon 810 SoC aided by the Adreno 430 GPU.  The variant with 64 GB storage has 4GB DDR4 RAM, enough even for the heavy multitaskers. There is no microSD card slot though. You get 4G dual SIM slots with all other connectivity options. However, a flagship killer without NFC may make you frown! I think it would have been the best companion for the fingerprint sensor for payments. When Android Pay gains ground, this feature will be sought by more people.

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Image Credit: www.xda-developers.com

Oxygen OS, close to stock android

Different Smartphone makers use different skin overlays atop Android and OnePlus has used its Oxygen OS atop Android 5.1. It is mostly like Stock Android and enhancements are actually useful. I liked the dark mode and shelf feature in Oxygen OS. However, the coolest thing of the UI is gesture support. Examples include double tap unlock and drawing letters on the screen to trigger apps and camera, etc. The finger print scanner in OnePlus 2 also doubles up as the home screen button and it works well. However, on a few occasions I found it acting weird. I think it is a bug that can be fixed by an update.

Blazing fast performance, without doubt

A flagship killer should run blazing fast and offer smooth multitasking, above all. In those respects I cannot find fault with the OnePlus 2. The Snapdragon 810 SoC has been slammed for the heating issues, but OnePlus has worked with Qualcomm to resolve this. I found the phone heating up after running graphically intensive games or long photo shoots, but it was not on the scale of the Sony Xperia Z3+. Anything I threw at it including shooting videos, running games or browsing with multiple tabs open- did not make the device stutter. The speakers located on the base of the devoice produce loud and clear sounds and call quality is good too. There are MaxxAudio effects which enhances sound output. I took the OnePlus 2 for a benchmark test too. It was close to rivals like Sony Xperia Z3+ and Samsung Galaxy S6.

Laser Focus enhances Imaging

I would expect a premium Smartphone ace the imaging tests. This is where the OnePlus 2 ticks nearly all the boxes and delivers overall impressive performance. The 13MP rear camera aided with dual LED flash and OIS takes brilliant and natural images at outdoors. The much touted laser focus system locks in objects in a jiffy. While the support for 4k standard and RAW image put a smile on my face, omission of a more feature rich camera app left me wanting for more. Despite this, the camera captures impressive low light images. The front snapper with a 5 MP lens is ideal for clear selfies. The 4k Videos looked good, but I found the device heating up while shooting the footage.

Decent, not great battery

OnePlus 2 comes with a 3,300mAh non-removable battery. I found it decent, but it would have been better if the company had packed in a higher capacity unit. With 4G network on, screen brightness set to maximum levels, it lasted for 16 hours on heavy usage, which is fine. The battery requires two and a half hours to reach 100% from zero. However, using the new USB Type-C port means there is no way to include QuickCharge feature of Qualcomm.

http://www.androidcentral.com/sites/androidcentral.com/files/styles/xlarge_wm_brw/public/article_images/2014/05/OnePlus-One-Battery.jpg?itok=fmx5y_np

Image Credit :www.androidcentral.com

Summing it all up

So, is OnePlus 2 actually the newest flagship killer? It is very close to that spot- if you ask me. The hardware spec is impressive, matched by super fast performance. The heating issues are not alarming and Oxygen OS does not ruin the stock Android experience either. You get an improved camera and dazzling display as well. The price of the device also hits the sweet spot. However, the small omissions in the device keep it a tad away from the flagship killer position. Granted, not having NFC or Quick Charge feature may not hamper your usage experience much, but a premium Smartphone should have these included. Neither does it boast water resistance which is seen even in cheaper Android devices including the Moto G3. Overall, I feel it is a compelling choice for users seeking top notch performance at a mid range price. Barring the newly announced Asus Zenfone 2 deluxe, it has no contender.

Ratings:

Build and design: 8/10

Display: 8/10

Software: 8/10

Performance: 8.5/10

Camera: 8.5/10

Overall: 8.5/10

 

 

 

 

OnePlus 2: Close to The Flagship Killerhttp://mystictreasuretrove.com/wp-content/uploads/2015/09/oneplus-2-kevlar-top-headset_01-1024x768.jpghttp://mystictreasuretrove.com/wp-content/uploads/2015/09/oneplus-2-kevlar-top-headset_01-150x150.jpg Maanasi PhonesTech reviews
Of late, the Chinese are making great inroads into technology, more so in Smartphone arena! Lenovo has been on a swing, especially after buying Motorola’s mobile phone segment. Xiaomi is being hailed as the Apple of China. Meanwhile, another Chinese brand OnePlus is also making its presence felt. Unlike...
Of late, the Chinese are making great inroads into technology, more so in Smartphone arena! Lenovo has been on a swing, especially after buying Motorola’s mobile phone segment. Xiaomi is being hailed as the Apple of China. Meanwhile, another Chinese brand OnePlus is also making its presence felt. Unlike Lenovo and Xiaomi, it does not cater to various segments of buyers in the Smartphone market. OnePlus labels its devices as ‘flagship killer’! The OnePlus One sold over 1.5 million units and now comes the successor OnePlus Two, labeled as the ‘2016 Flagship Killer’. Does it have the power to take on the likes of Behemoths from the stables of Samsung, Sony and HTC? I tried the OnePlus 2 for a week, and the experience was largely nice. <strong>Two to Tango: Enhancements everywhere</strong> While the OnePlus One offered premium Smartphone experience at nearly half the cost, with OnePlus 2 the company wants to up the ante further. I found it sporting enhancements in nearly every segment- build, camera, features and performance. <strong>Classy, premium design</strong> The phone sports a classy looking magnesium-aluminium alloy frame. At the back, you get coarse Sandstone black finish cover which is removable. If the sandstone black cover seems thin, you may opt for a wooden back. In fact, OnePlus offer more texture choices for rear panel like Kevlar and Rosewood. The device edges are stainless steel chamfered, adding to the premium look. The phone has a USB Type-C port for charging- a rarity in smart phones. Beneath the display there is the fingerprint scanner. At 175 grams, the device does feel heavier than many flagships it competes with. <strong>Gorgeous display</strong> The black front panel of OnePlus 2 is made of a 5.5-inch full-HD display with IPS LCD technology. There is Gorilla Glass 4 protection atop the display. The company claims with 600 nits brightness the device has the brightest display. I found it way brighter than the predecessor, OnePlus One. It offers nice sunlight legibility, wide viewing angles and excellent touch response. If you are grudging about the lack of a 2k display, remember including such a display would tax the battery. Overall, the device has a display that will suit all needs, including gaming and watching movies. <strong>Impressive hardware spec</strong> For its mid range price, OnePlus 2 offers mind blowing hardware specs matching most of the flagship rivals. Inside the device runs a powerful Snapdragon 810 SoC aided by the Adreno 430 GPU.  The variant with 64 GB storage has 4GB DDR4 RAM, enough even for the heavy multitaskers. There is no microSD card slot though. You get 4G dual SIM slots with all other connectivity options. However, a flagship killer without NFC may make you frown! I think it would have been the best companion for the fingerprint sensor for payments. When Android Pay gains ground, this feature will be sought by more people. <strong>Oxygen OS, close to stock android</strong> Different Smartphone makers use different skin overlays atop Android and OnePlus has used its Oxygen OS atop Android 5.1. It is mostly like Stock Android and enhancements are actually useful. I liked the dark mode and shelf feature in Oxygen OS. However, the coolest thing of the UI is gesture support. Examples include double tap unlock and drawing letters on the screen to trigger apps and camera, etc. The finger print scanner in OnePlus 2 also doubles up as the home screen button and it works well. However, on a few occasions I found it acting weird. I think it is a bug that can be fixed by an update. <strong>Blazing fast performance, without doubt</strong> A flagship killer should run blazing fast and offer smooth multitasking, above all. In those respects I cannot find fault with the OnePlus 2. The Snapdragon 810 SoC has been slammed for the heating issues, but OnePlus has worked with Qualcomm to resolve this. I found the phone heating up after running graphically intensive games or long photo shoots, but it was not on the scale of the Sony Xperia Z3+. Anything I threw at it including shooting videos, running games or browsing with multiple tabs open- did not make the device stutter. The speakers located on the base of the devoice produce loud and clear sounds and call quality is good too. There are MaxxAudio effects which enhances sound output. I took the OnePlus 2 for a benchmark test too. It was close to rivals like Sony Xperia Z3+ and Samsung Galaxy S6. <strong>Laser Focus enhances Imaging</strong> I would expect a premium Smartphone ace the imaging tests. This is where the OnePlus 2 ticks nearly all the boxes and delivers overall impressive performance. The 13MP rear camera aided with dual LED flash and OIS takes brilliant and natural images at outdoors. The much touted laser focus system locks in objects in a jiffy. While the support for 4k standard and RAW image put a smile on my face, omission of a more feature rich camera app left me wanting for more. Despite this, the camera captures impressive low light images. The front snapper with a 5 MP lens is ideal for clear selfies. The 4k Videos looked good, but I found the device heating up while shooting the footage. <strong>Decent, not great battery</strong> OnePlus 2 comes with a 3,300mAh non-removable battery. I found it decent, but it would have been better if the company had packed in a higher capacity unit. With 4G network on, screen brightness set to maximum levels, it lasted for 16 hours on heavy usage, which is fine. The battery requires two and a half hours to reach 100% from zero. However, using the new USB Type-C port means there is no way to include QuickCharge feature of Qualcomm. <strong>Summing it all up</strong> So, is OnePlus 2 actually the newest flagship killer? It is very close to that spot- if you ask me. The hardware spec is impressive, matched by super fast performance. The heating issues are not alarming and Oxygen OS does not ruin the stock Android experience either. You get an improved camera and dazzling display as well. The price of the device also hits the sweet spot. However, the small omissions in the device keep it a tad away from the flagship killer position. Granted, not having NFC or Quick Charge feature may not hamper your usage experience much, but a premium Smartphone should have these included. Neither does it boast water resistance which is seen even in cheaper Android devices including the Moto G3. Overall, I feel it is a compelling choice for users seeking top notch performance at a mid range price. Barring the newly announced Asus Zenfone 2 deluxe, it has no contender. <u>Ratings:</u> Build and design: 8/10 Display: 8/10 Software: 8/10 Performance: 8.5/10 Camera: 8.5/10 Overall: 8.5/10        

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